Scientific Literature

Modelling the Public Health Impact of Voxelotor in the Management of Sickle Cell Disease in France

Galacteros, F., Ethgen, O. and Beillat, M.. PLOS ONE, 18(9). (2023)

Sickle cell disease (SCD) is an inherited blood disorder in which sickle hemoglobin (HbS) polymerizes, leading to red blood cell sickling and chronic hemolytic anemia, vaso-occlusive crises, and end-organ damage associated with early mortality.

Despite standard of care, patients with SCD still experience complications and early mortality, highlighting remaining unmet treatment needs. Voxelotor is a first-in-class HbS polymerization inhibitor approved by the US Food and Drug Administration as a treatment for SCD and by the European Medicines Agency for hemolytic anemia due to SCD.

In clinical studies, voxelotor has been shown to increase hemoglobin (Hb) and decrease hemolytic markers in patients with SCD. The objective of this study was to estimate the impact of voxelotor on the burden of SCD in France using a modeling approach, accounting for its anticipated adoption and diffusion over the next 5 years.

We designed a sequential multi-cohort model to project and compare the cumulative incidence of SCD complications over a 20-year time horizon in a world with and without voxelotor. A distribution of patients was simulated across various levels of Hb response based on the phase 3 HOPE trial results, and relative risk reduction was adjusted using published meta-analysis results that projected risk reduction due to a 1 g/dL increase in Hb.

In 6100 modelled patients with SCD treated with voxelotor, the model projected the number of deaths to decrease by 39.4%, with an increase of 1.8% in life-years gained. The model also projected life expectancy to increase by 15.8%, and incident cases of stroke, pulmonary hypertension, and chronic kidney disease to decrease by 19.8%, 24.5%, and 25.1%, respectively.

The model suggests that improving Hb using a treatment such as voxelotor may have a positive public health impact by reducing the burden of SCD for patients and the healthcare system.

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